Identifying Recipients at High Risk for Graft Failure After Heart Retransplantation

Division of Cardiac Surgery, Department of Surgery, The Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions, Baltimore, Maryland, USA.
The Annals of thoracic surgery (Impact Factor: 3.85). 03/2012; 93(3):712-6. DOI: 10.1016/j.athoracsur.2011.10.065
Source: PubMed


The aim of this study was to identify recipient factors that are associated with a high risk of graft failure after heart retransplantation (HRT).
The prospectively collected United Network for Organ Sharing registry was used to identify patients undergoing HRT among 24,477 patients who had undergone cardiac transplantation between 1997 and 2009. The primary outcome was graft failure within 1 year of HRT. The impact of 35 recipient variables on the primary outcome was tested in exploratory univariate logistic regression analysis. Those factors found to be significantly associated with graft failure were entered into a multivariable logistic regression model.
A total of 671 patients underwent HRT during the study period. Overall, 302 (45%) grafts failed after HRT at a mean follow-up of 4.3±3.7 years. Three recipient factors were found to be associated with 1-year graft failure in the multivariate model: older age, increasing serum creatinine, and mechanical ventilation before HRT. Moreover, each decade increase in recipient age was associated with a 20% increase in odds of 1-year graft failure (odds ratio, 1.02; 95% confidence interval, 1.01 to 1.04; p=0.005). Similarly, each 1-mg/dL increase in serum creatinine increased odds of graft failure by 58% (odds ratio, 1.58; 95% confidence interval, 1.27 to 1.97; p<0.001). Patients who were mechanically ventilated had a fourfold higher likelihood of 1-year graft failure (odds ratio, 4.32; 95% confidence interval, 2.28 to 8.18; p<0.001).
The risk of graft failure after HRT increases with an increasing number of significant recipient risk factors, namely older age, increasing serum creatinine, and mechanical ventilation. These risk factors should serve as relative contraindications to HRT, especially when present in combination, given the higher rate of graft failure in these patients.

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  • No preview · Article · Mar 2012 · The Annals of thoracic surgery
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    ABSTRACT: Within the first year following orthotopic heart transplantation, the patient is at risk of graft failure, rejection, and infection. Late mortality is often due to allograph vasculopathy. Most of the patients with primary graft failure will usually recover with temporary mechanical ventricular assist support; however, on occasion the patient must be retransplanted. For the patient who suffers primary graft failure necessitating explanation and bridging until a new suitable graft is found, there are several total artificial heart options. However, in the pediatric population these options are limited. The authors’ surgical colleagues were able to fashion a paracorporeal total artificial heart constructed with 2 ventricular assist devices. In this case report, the authors discuss a pediatric patient who had to be explanted and supported for an extended amount of time. This article describes the incidence of cardiomyopathy in juvenile rheumatoid arthritis patients, the choice of extracorporeal membrane oxygenation/extracorporeal complete life support versus ventricular assist devices for support, the major causes of primary graft failure, and the authors’ experience in caring for an adolescent with such a device for a protracted length of time (118 days).
    No preview · Article · Sep 2012 · ICU Director
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    ABSTRACT: Background: Heart retransplant (HRT) recipients represent a growing number of transplant patients. The impact of concurrent kidney transplants (KTs) in this population has not been well studied. We tested the hypothesis that recipients of HRT with concurrent KT (HRT-KT) would have worse survival than recipients of HRT alone. Methods and results: A retrospective analysis of the United Network of Organ Sharing database was performed for all patients undergoing HRT from 1987 to 2011. There were 1660 HRT patients, of which 116 (7%) received concurrent KT. Those who received HRT-KT had older age, longer wait-list time, worse kidney function, and more known diabetes. Survival among recipients of HRT-KT was significantly better than that of recipients of HRT alone (P=0.005). A subgroup of 323 HRT patients with severe kidney dysfunction (estimated glomerular filtration rate <30 mL/min per 1.73 m(2) or on dialysis) was studied in more detail, and 76 (24%) received concurrent KT. Those on dialysis at the time of HRT had better survival with versus without concurrent KT (P<0.0001). On multivariable analysis, concurrent KT was independently associated with better outcomes for all patients with HRT and for the subgroup of patients with severe kidney dysfunction. Conclusions: Recipients of HRT-KT have better survival than recipients of HRT alone. Further research is needed to determine which HRT patients may benefit the most from concurrent KT.
    Preview · Article · Dec 2012 · Journal of the American Heart Association
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